Bike & Boat Peloponnese & Saronic Gulf
8 days / 7 nights | from/to Athens | Guided bike tours
aprx. 126 miles/200 km by bicycle | Level 2–3
The Peloponnese is a Greek region steeped in history. The Mycenaeans, ancient Greeks, Romans, Venetians, Ottomans, and Albanians have all left their mark on the “Island of Pelops”. Here you will find some of the greatest archaeological sites of antiquity and the Middle Ages. Discover this unique, culturally rich region as well as the diverse islands of the Saronic Gulf by boat and bike! The three masted Thalassa will be your floating home as you travel on this one-of-a-kind journey through 5,000 years of Greek history.
Cycle through orange orchards and pomegranate plantations. Experience the “Golden Mycenae” and the impressive Lion Gate, the cyclopean walls and the Treasury of Atreus. Stroll through the picturesque, medieval town of Nafplio with its imposing fortifications and embark on a geological journey through time on the volcanic peninsula of Methana! Discover the enchanting islands of the Saronic Gulf each with its own distinct and unique character. Be it the pistachio island of Aegina where the Temple of Aphaia sits enthroned high above the blue of the sea or the completely traffic-free island of Hydra where the countless donkeys have been the only means of transport since time immemorial. The islands of Poros and Spetses, fragrant with wild herbs, is sure to enchant your senses as take in panoramic views while cycling along almost traffic-free roads!
Day 1 (Sat): Marina Zeas (Piraeus/Athens) – (Embarkation)
Individually arranged arrival to Marina Zeas; part of Piraeus and about 25 km from the airport. Check in is possible from 2 pm. Dinner will be on board and the night will be spent in Piraeus.
Day 2 (Sun): Island of Poros (Cycling aprx. 14 mi./23 km)
The morning will be spent sailing to the Island of Poros. In the afternoon, we will start cycling from the island’s capital, which holds the same name as the island itself, towards the 18th century Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi. Continuing on, we will almost completely circle the island which, in ancient times, was considered to be the island of Poseidon, God of the Sea. Shortly before the end of the tour we will reach Russian Bay, whose sandy beach and turquoise waters are sure to tempt us to dive in for a swim. Back in the enchanting harbour of Poros City, with its landmark clock tower reaching high above all the other buildings, we can end our eventful day surrounded by characteristic Greek atmosphere.
Day 3 (Mon): Galatas – Ermioni – Nafplio (Cycling aprx. 25 mi./40 km)
After breakfast a small car ferry will take us from Poros to Galatas in the Peloponnese. From here, the bike tour will lead us for the most part along the sea and through fertile agricultural land towards the small coastal town of Ermioni. Here the Thalassa will await us for an on board lunch and a leisurely afternoon crossing to Nafplio. In the early afternoon, our tour guide will invite us on a stroll through the picturesque alleys of the former Greek capital. Nafplio is a captivating island with its ingenious fortifications and eventful history along with its flower filled old town and the numerous very individual, beautiful cafes, bars and restaurants. The perfect place to spend a wonderful, relaxed evening.
Day 4 (Tue): Mycenae – Island of Spetses (Cycling aprx. 31 mi./50 km)
After breakfast, the day’s tour leads into the Peloponnesian inland. After cycling through an impressive apricot and orange grove we will reach the remarkable Mycenaean fortress of Tiryns and following the magnificent castle of Mycenae. Both sites have been UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 1999. In the 2nd millennium BC, Mycenae was one of Greece’s most important cities. King Atreus and his son Agamemnon play a significant role in Greek mythology. The excavation site is enthralling: The famous Lion Gate, the incredibly thick cyclopean walls, Grave Circles A and B along with the gold and silver discoveries and the Treasury of Atreus are all very much worth a visit. In the late afternoon, the boat will take us from Nafplio to the Island of Spetses. In the evening, we can stroll through the alleys of the beautiful old town, decorated with pebble mosaics, or end the evening at the old fishing port with a glass of wine.
Day 5 (Wed): Islands of Spetses and Hydra (Cycling aprx. 15 mi./25 km)
The island of Spetses got its name from the Venetians who called it “Isola della spezie”, the island of herbs. With the accompanying aroma of wild herbs and panoramic views, today’s tour will lead us along the traffic-free road that circles the island. For the majority of the ride we will be able to enjoy incredible views of the turquoise sea. Later on there will be a longer break at one of the beautiful beaches for a coffee and a swim. The journey will then continue to the island of Hydra. Since time immemorial donkeys have been the only means of transport on this unique, beautiful island. Thanks to seafaring, the island became very wealthy in the middle ages. Then, after the Greek War of Independence, spanning from 1821-1830, the island fell into a hundred-year slumber. It was only when, in 1957, the film “Boy on a Dolphin” starring the unforgettable Sofia Loren was filmed on Hydra that life was brought back to the island which then became a mecca for artists. A unique place with arguably the most beautiful sunset in the region!
Day 6 (Thu): Methana Peninsula – Island of Aegina (Cycling aprx. 15 mi./25 km)
In the morning we sail to Methana Peninsula whose volcanic origin is immediately noticeable by the smell of sulphur and the shimmering colours of the rocks. The peninsula is characterised by its 30 plus volcanos, some of which are still active, as well as the medicinal, sulphurous thermal springs. Today’s round trip offers numerous, incredible views. In the afternoon, we will sail to the island of Aegina. If the weather permits, there will be the chance for a longer swimming break along the way.
Day 7 (Fri): Island of Aegina – Piraeus/Athens (Cycling aprx. 22 mi./35 km)
The island of Aegina is famous even beyond the borders of Greece for its excellent pistachios. Today’s bike tour takes us up to the sanctuary of the goddess Aphaia. The beautifully preserved temple towers rest high up above the blue sea, the only place on the island from where the Aegean Sea can be seen on both sides. On the ride back we will cycle through the centre of the island passing the great monastery of Saint Nektarios to Aegina city where the ship awaits. We will then sail back to Piraeus and our exciting Greek cruise will come to a close with a final, celebrative evening on board.
Day 8 (Sat) Marina Zeas (Piraeus/Athens) – (Disembarkation)
After breakfast on board it is time to disembark to return home or to extend your holiday a few days longer in Athens.
Please note: All cycling distances stated above are approximate only.
Itinerary changes: We reserve the right to make changes to the route in the case of changing wind and weather conditions as well as for reasons of organizational necessity.